WAEC To Hold Exams Without Break For 5 Weeks

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…….Warn candidates against examination Malpractice

The West African Examination Council, WAEC has disclosed a novel development in the conduct of the 2020 West African Senior Secondary Certificate Examination, WASSCE.

According to the Council, the examination will hold without break for five weeks in order to meet the five weeks span for the examination.

The Head of the Nigeria National Office, HNO, Mr. Patrick Areghan stated this at a press conference on Tuesday.

He added that examination which will now hold between 3rd of August and 5th of September would be held from Monday through Saturday for the five weeks.

“The choice of the period for the conduct of the examination was not arbitrarily set. WAEC consulted with the governments of all the five member countries before arriving at the period and duration of the examination.

“As you are aware, the examination was earlier scheduled to take place between the 6th of April and 5th of June, 2020, but had to be postponed due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

Revealing that a total of One Million Five Hundred and Forty Nine Thousand Four Hundred and Sixty Three (1,549, 463) candidates registered for the diet from 19,129 schools out of which 786,421 are males and 763,042 are females, the HNO said in deference to the Federal Government of Nigeria, the five-week arrangement was arrived at in order to make room for the other Examining Bodies to equally conduct their examinations in good time.  

“The shortening of the period is also of advantage in terms of reducing the period of mass social interaction with its attendant consequences.

During the waiting period, we continued to fine tune and perfect all arrangements for the smooth and successful conduct of the examination and I am happy to inform you that we are set to conduct the examination in Nigeria.”

In conducting the examination, Mr. Areghan said the council  have taken due cognizance of the various measures and protocols rolled out by the Federal and State governments of Nigeria, aimed at checking the spread of the pandemic.  

“We have encapsulated all these measures in a pamphlet which will be circulated to all stakeholders for their necessary guidance. For the sake of emphasis, schools must provide wash-hand buckets with running water, soaps, hand sanitizers and thermometer hand-gun to check the temperature of all concerned.  “All examination functionaries, including the Council’s staff on distribution; Supervisors; Invigilators, Inspectors; candidates and school officials will be required to wear face masks, wash and sanitize their hands daily and throughout the duration of the examination.

“Let me assure you and the general public that we shall adhere strictly to social and physical distancing in the examination halls by making sure that candidates sit two (2) metres apart. 

He however said this means that many more classrooms will be used and many more supervisors and invigilators will be required to conduct the examination and this has certainly raised the supervision fee to be paid to supervisors as well as the provision of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to staff, Supervisors and other examination officials. 

“No doubt, all these measures have financial implications which were not contemplated at the time of drawing up the budget for the conduct of the examination. The big question looming now is how can this extra fund be raised?

“On this note we are appealing to the governments at various levels to come to our aid. We equally call on Multi-National companies, corporate organizations and philanthropic individuals to donate these PPE to us because it is essential that all examination functionaries are well kitted to avoid the spread of the disease.  

He also use the medium to escalate the council’s challenge to the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on Covid-19 and requesting for any possible assistance.  “WAEC has Zonal and Branch Offices all over the Federation.  The various state governments can donate the required PPE to the WAEC offices in their states.

“This examination is going to be conducted under a very unfriendly atmosphere and conditions.  I will like to use this opportunity to advise all schools and candidates to make the best use of the situation in order to turn adversity into success, he added.

He warned all schools and candidates to shun any form of examination malpractice. “Lack of preparedness is not an excuse to cheat. For the benefit of doubt, standards already set remain sacrosanct.  Do not delude yourself by thinking that they will be lowered due to the prevailing circumstances.  “Therefore, as usual, you get what you deserve.  It will be a double tragedy for any candidate to write the examination under very difficult circumstances and not to have any result.

“Schools and candidates must resist the temptation of patronizing dubious websites that claim or would claim to have examination questions at their disposal. We cannot claim not to know that they are right now strategizing on their evil machinations. They are fake and conscienceless destiny destroyers. Self-reliance is the sure key to success.

The HNO also disclosed at the press briefing that the Final International Timetable has been sent to all the WAEC Zonal and Branch Offices for onward dispatch to schools and Federal and State Ministries of Education.

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